Sunday, July 20, 2008

Iran's Generation Landslide

Generation Landslide was a 1973 Alice Cooper song that had some meaning for the era it was written. But today in Iran, it may have some real meaning.

Here's a WSJ article you may have missed along the way.

(Emphasis is mine)

When Hassan Bakhtiar couldn't find a job last year, his mother told him to pray and read the Quran.

Instead, the 25-year-old aerospace engineer dropped in on a packed appearance by Alireza Azmandian, Iran's most famous motivational speaker and self-help guru. Now, he meditates by staring at a flickering candle and chants Mr. Azmandian's inspirational catch phrases.

Religion doesn't offer me answers any more," Mr. Bakhtiar says, after listening to Mr. Azmandian at a public auditorium in a shabby neighborhood of South Tehran. But, he says, "this seminar changed my life."

The self-help craze -- long part of life in the Western world -- is taking the Islamic Republic by storm. Iran is one of the world's youngest nations, with 70% of its 65 million under the age of 30. There's widespread disenchantment among young people with Iran's strict theocratic regime, which requires headscarves for women and bans alcohol. And jobs are scarce.

It has been my firm belief for many years now, Iranians are the most forward thinking people in the Muslim world. However, the problems we are currently facing with Iran do not originate from the rank and file citizenry.

No folks, the actions that threaten world peace and and seek to oppress artistic and cultural freedom within its own borders, lie squarely on the shoulders of a backward thinking government. This is a government that reversed almost all of traditional Persian influences that go back much further, than the implementation of Islam as the official religion and certainly the current regime.

As the article claims, the demographics of current day Iran are dominated overwhelmingly by younger people. As many of us already know, they can get restless when they see inefficiency and hypocrisy. And today, we are seeing just that in the Iranian leadership. So if it is so plain to those of us on the outside, you know they see it and live it on the inside.

With this in mind, I can see why the youth of Iran will someday reverse the backward courses that the firmly entrenched Islamic mafia-like government has taken the nation (that once sported Zoroastrianism as a religion and a Hebrew queen). I can see why they turn to anything that is not buried in a violent ideology that is rooted in hate and oppression.

It's only a matter of time before these dinosaurs die off or get so old, they cannot hang onto power. It's only a matter of time before these youth are empowered enough to assert their wishes and desires upon the older generation that has created a model of death and despair. The only problem I see with exercising patience is the advent of a nuclear weapon in the hands of these aging dinosaurs, and whether they want to go out with a bang. A big bang.


Greg said...

The Iranian people are our greatest asset against the regime. No one hates it more than its victims: average Iranians. All the more reason to avoid military conflict if possible. Those young people could easily be turned against us in the event of an attack on their country. We need to up te sanctions on the regime, and more importantly, get China and Russia to stop protecting the regime. China and Russia have blocked all meaningful sanctions on the nuclear issue. Maybe Condi could permit herself a couple of words about China and Russia's shameful position on the issue....

LASunsett said...

//China and Russia have blocked all meaningful sanctions on the nuclear issue.//

Heaven forbid that a new regime friendlier to the US should come to power, cutting Russia and China out of the mix.